Category Archives: Decks

You heard it here: Today’s composite decking materials are great — not perfect

West Central and SW Ohio composite deck builderWhen it comes to recommending a product or service, how far do you go with it? Nothing is perfect all of the time. It’s important to manage the customer’s expectations, but sometimes that’s difficult.

Let’s look at the newest generation of composite decking materials. These materials have improved over time since they were first developed. By “over time,” we don’t mean they’ve aged like fine wine. We mean the technology continues to advance and the products keep getting better.

Technically, what is composite decking? The boards are made of a mixture of plastic and wood fibers, sometimes referred to as reclaimed wood. Some are formed through an extrusion process, and others are formed by compression molding; the materials are heated and compressed to create a physical bond. Several of the newest generation boards also have the extra protection of a cap or shell around the board. To make comparisons even more interesting, some brands are capped on three sides while some are capped on all four sides.

What our clients need to know is this: not all composites are the same. Several different manufacturers produce these building products and compete for your (and our) business. Each manufacturer may have more than one product line at different price points. In some cases, a manufacturer produces a line of boards that are protected by that additional capping AND ALSO produces another line without the capping — this would be their “value” product.

When composite decking boards first hit the market, many homeowners were reluctant to use them. They looked too much like “fake wood.” Today’s composites look much more like natural wood — to the extent that homeowners no longer steer away from them based on appearance.

Wooden decks such as this PT deck in Centreville, OH have time to cure properly it built during the cooler monthsHow composites out-perform wood

Have homeowners been over-sold or over-convinced when it comes to composite decks? There has been so much buzz about these products they’ve taken on a “larger than life” reputation. To some extent this is a result of very effective advertising. Marketing campaigns have convinced consumers that composite decking is the answer to every discerning homeowner’s quest for the perfect deck, in every respect.

In marketing terms, word-of-mouth can be more powerful than paid advertising, but at some point it all runs together.

Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio invites you to take a fresh look at the realities of composite decking. Yes, composites perform better than natural wood when it comes to these two important characteristics:

  • Composites are low-maintenance compared to wood. No sanding, staining, sealing required. Just wash gently with soap and water once in a while.
  • Composites are warranted against rotting, splitting, splintering, insect damage and material defects.

So, does that cover it? No, actually it does not.

Composites are not indestructible

To counter some of the hype about composites, if you are considering a composite deck, we recommend you read the manufacturer’s warranty before making a decision. Since there are several manufacturers, you can read several warranties, and you may find they are substantially similar. (Note: we are not lawyers.)

As we stated earlier, composites are warranted against things like rotting, splitting, splintering, insect damage and material defects. That’s great! But the marketers also boast their products resist fading, staining, scratching and mold. Hmm. What’s that word? “Resist.” This is not the same as a warranty. This is not a promise. Composites are not indestructible.

The new deck complements the Tudor architecture of this home in Cincinnati, OH.

Consider stains. How about red barbeque sauce hitting your beautiful driftwood gray composite deck? Check the manufacturer’s warranty. One such warranty states that the manufacturer cannot guarantee resistance to spilled food and beverages that are not properly cleaned up within one week. The onus is on the homeowner to see the spill and clean it up within a short time frame.

What about scratches? Accidents do happen, and if a person’s ring, watch or charm bracelet is somehow scraped against the composite deck surface, a scratch may result. On a wooden deck, a scratch can usually be sanded out unless it is extremely deep. The homeowner would need to apply fresh stain and deck sealer after sanding the wood, but the scratch will probably be a distant memory after the work is done. Meanwhile, scratches cannot be sanded out of a composite deck.

Composite or natural wood — making an informed choice

What’s our end game in providing this much information? We want our clients to be well-informed consumers. Composite decks are great, and we do recommend them for their easy maintenance, durability and longevity compared to wood decks. Some homeowners believe they can save money by choosing a wooden deck, but adding up the cost of 10-15 years of deck maintenance, they don’t always save money in the long run. Overall we build more composite decks than wood decks, and that trend is increasing.

We encourage all of our clients to do some research and know what you are buying so you will have realistic expectations.

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

If you are interested in redecking an existing deck, adding a new deck or combination outdoor living space to your home, we want you to become one of our well-informed clients. Contact Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio today at (937) 848 – 7040 or (513) 897 – 2040, or via email at wcohio@archadeck.net.

 

THIS is the season for decks and redecks — and don’t forget the shade covering, too!

Kettering OH TT dream deck

Dream deck in Kettering, OH, by Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio.

2017 is shaping up to be “The Year of The Deck” around Cincinnati and Dayton. We get so many calls for decks this time of year! With fall weather around the corner, are you suddenly wishing you had a deck?

Decks are ideal for sitting outside and relaxing. Perfect for sharing time with family and friends. Lovely for evenings under the stars and for grilling and dining al fresco, day or night. Decks are especially great for parties (if you like parties).

When you step out through your back door, do you take a step or two (or more) down before you reach the ground? If so, then you need a deck!

Decks may seem very straightforward, but you’ll have to make some decisions. We can help you with that. Here are some of the decisions many clients are exploring when they call Archadeck of West Central and Southwest Ohio for information about adding a deck to the home:

Do you need a new deck or a redeck?

If you have an older deck and you’re thinking about replacing it, you may have the option of redecking instead of starting from scratch with a new deck. This can save you some money, but before we can commit to redecking we’ll need to examine your current deck. If the underlying structure is still sound and in good condition, we may be able to use it. If so, we’ll replace the surface decking boards along with the steps, railings and pickets.

Pressure treated wood multi-level Custom designed deck, Timber Tech Ornamental composite rails with Deckorator pickets and Kichler low voltage deck lights in Butler county West Chester OhioWould you prefer natural wood or one of the composite decking products now available?

Some homeowners prefer real wood, and that’s fine if you’re willing to perform the tasks of regular deck maintenance — or hire someone to do the work for you each year. Without annual cleaning, staining and resealing, a wooden deck will not look its best and can deteriorate more quickly than you’d expect.

Composite decking boards are looking more like natural wood every day. Decks built with composite decking materials such as AZEK or TimberTech will retain their like-new appearance with minimal maintenance on your part. The trade-off is the cost, because these decks are more expensive. Many homeowners decide the cost of composite decking is more than offset by its maintenance-free durability and longevity.

Will you redeck with natural wood or composite?

If you are hoping for redecking rather than tearing down the old deck and building a new one, you will still need to decide whether you want natural wood or composite decking. Even if your original deck was made entirely of natural wood, we can switch to composite decking for the redeck. Many clients choose to redeck purely for this reason. They are no longer willing to perform the upkeep that natural wood requires, so they are ready to make the switch to low-maintenance materials.

Our award winning deck in Spring Valley, OH features a curved, raised area for dining.

Our award winning deck in Spring Valley, OH features a curved, raised area just for outdoor dining.

How large will your deck be?

You’re not limited to the 10×12-foot builder-grade deck size you may have seen on some new homes. When it comes to deck size, we encourage the homeowner to consider all of the ways you’ll want to use the deck. Will it serve more than one function? Would you like your deck to have several sections for different purposes?

If you’ll be grilling out on the deck, you may want to use an area near the grill for a dining table and chairs. When you’re considering the deck size, you need to allow plenty of room for people to pull their chairs out from the table and for other guests to pass behind them comfortably. When it’s not mealtime, you might prefer to sit on a couch, love seat, or other comfortable outdoor lounge furniture. So already we’re looking at three areas on the deck for grilling, dining and lounging. Be sure you plan enough space for various activities.

Outdoor Living at its best in Clear Creek Township by Archadeck of West Central and SW Ohio

Are you considering a deck-and-patio combination?

We can show you many examples of outdoor living space combinations, including hardscapes, we have designed and built for Dayton and Cincinnati area homeowners. The more you use your outdoor space, the more space you may need! Especially if you enjoy entertaining outdoors, the deck-and-patio combination will give you more room for separate dining and seating areas — even room for a fire pit or outdoor fireplace and a seating wall.

Shadetree Canopy retractable awnings installed over a mahogany deck in Butler Township just north of Dayton Ohio

Shadetree Canopy retractable awnings installed over a mahogany deck in Butler Township just north of Dayton,Ohio.

Don’t forget to include a shade covering in your design!

Whether it’s a pergola or retractable canopy, shade covering doesn’t need to be an afterthought. We recommend planning for shade during the initial design of your outdoor living project. Shade may not be a concern going into fall, but when spring and summer roll back around, you’ll be glad you planned ahead for protection from the sun’s brutal UV rays.

Archadeck of West Central and Southwest Ohio is an authorized dealer and installer for several companies that provide shade solutions:

Equinox pergolas

Lumon Natural Light Patio Covers

ShadeTree Retractable Canopy Systems

ShadeFX retractable canopies

Pergolas are attractive and provide visual impact to any outdoor living space, but in some locations they do not provide enough shade. Some of the products listed above can be combined with a pergola for just the right mix of function and beauty, while some offer an alternative to pergolas. Also, some of these shade products can protect you from the rain. Let us help you decide which of these would work best with your deck or deck-and-patio combination.

If you are interested in a new deck or redeck, with or without a patio or shade cover, contact Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio today at (937) 848 – 7040 or (513) 897 – 2040, or via email at wcohio@archadeck.net.

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

 

When is a contract not like a steak?

When is a contract not like a steakDoes this seem like a silly question? Humor us for a moment, because it will drive home the importance of reading and understanding the contract you must sign when a builder undertakes a construction job at your home. This applies to us, Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio, and to any other reputable builder out there.

When you order a steak in a restaurant, there is an implied agreement between you and the restaurant that the steak will be cooked the way you want it cooked. When the steak is delivered to your table, if it does not meet your expectations, you can send it back, and they will cook another one for you. If you are unhappy with your meal, sometimes the restaurant even throws in a free dessert or gives you the whole meal for free, “just because.”

Dayton OH Sunroom Builder

When you arrange for a contractor to design and build an addition to your home — even an outdoor living addition — you’ll need more than an implied agreement. For the arrangement to work, you and the builder must sign a contract. That way, everyone agrees on the expectations up front. No surprises!

Included within (or along with) your contract is the following information:

  • A description of the work to be done, also known as the scope of the project
  • The total exact price of the project, including materials, labor, permits and taxes
  • A specification sheet listing dimensions, special features and specific materials to be used
  • A detailed, labeled rendering created by an architectural draftsman based on our conversations about what the project will entail
  • Details about client responsibilities
  • A payment schedule
  • A method for dealing with amendments to the work, if needed
  • Details about how we, as the builder, will handle clean-up during and after completion of the job

When is a contract not like a steak You should not sign the contract for your new deck, porch or patio project until you are certain that you agree with and understand every detail in it. It’s important that we address any inconsistencies or concerns you may have before we get started. We never want to find out, later on down the road, that a customer had unrealistic expectations.

As you can see, the contract sets the tone and lays out the expectations for any construction project, no matter how large or how small. We take the contract very seriously. At Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio, we pride ourselves in following best business practices. Our objective is to consistently produce satisfied customers while continuing to maintain a successful business.

Dayton Award Winning Outdoor Living SpacesWhen we design and build your new outdoor living environment, we are poised to accommodate your needs and desires in every way. Putting everything in writing, up front, is our way of ensuring we fulfill your wishes. We want you to get everything you expect from your design the first time around.

One area for potential misunderstandings is the timing of your outdoor living project. If we run into inclement weather while working at your home, we’ll need to take time away from the site until conditions improve. Also, addendums to your project while construction is underway, or problems obtaining the correct materials, can extend the completion date. Delays to your project will affect other clients in the queue for future start dates. Conversely, if we encounter delays at a project scheduled before yours, then your start date might be affected.

Does this “contract talk” sound boring? It may, but think about it this way: the concept of using a contract for the scope of a building project evolved because somebody somewhere had a misunderstanding about some work to be done. We want to avoid any such misunderstandings! The contract serves to set boundaries. Should we encounter differences of opinion during the course of our work together, the contract would serve to navigate our relationship through to the successful completion of your outdoor living project.

Remember that steak you ordered at the beginning of this article? Obviously, you can’t compare the journey of building an outdoor living space addition to that of ordering a steak at a restaurant. A steak will stay with you for about 24 hours, while a deck, for example, will be with you for 20 years or more. If something isn’t right with your project, or if there is an aspect you aren’t pleased with, we will work with you, within the contract, to make things right, but we can’t throw in a free pergola. Again, we will work with you within the contract; if it is not written in the signed contract, it is not and cannot be an expectation.

If you are contemplating an outdoor living addition at your home, you will not find a more reliable or professional contractor than Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio. We want to work with you to create the backyard of your dreams. Contact us to learn more at (937) 848 – 7040 or (513) 897 – 2040. You can also email us at wcohio@archadeck.net

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Don’t miss the Second Saturday stroll this weekend!

second saturdayArchadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio will be open during the 2nd Saturday Street Fair this weekend — Saturday from 11-2 our showroom will be open for perusing our extensive portfolio of all things outdoor living. As America’s Deck and Porch Builder®” we have been providing award-winning outdoor living spaces to the Miami Valley since 1990. Specializing in custom designed decks, porches, patios, screened rooms, sunrooms, gazebos and pergolas. We are also your local dealer for the Big Green Egg Arteflame Grills, Lumon Natural Light Patio Covers and much more!

We are a NARI Certified Remodeler with a staff of trained design consultants, and a professional staff to deliver the dazzling outdoor living experience that you will enjoy and your neighbors will envy.Kettering, OH dream deck winner

Stop by our showroom at 237 South Main Street in Waynesville during the Second Saturday Stroll event to learn how to heighten your outdoor living experience. Our Big Green “Egg-spert” will be on hand and our talented design team will be available to answer any and all questions if you are considering the addition of a custom outdoor living space! The day promises to be fun and fulfilling!Big Green Egg

Contact us at (937) 848 – 7040 or (513) 897 – 2040 or via email at wcohio@archadeck.net, or come see us this weekend so you don’t miss this opportunity.

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Get Your Deck Looking Its Best In Time for the Outdoor Living Season

The outdoor living season is in full swing — is your deck ready?cookout

 

 

 

 

 

In an effort to improve your total outdoor living experience, Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio offers a way to keep your old deck looking like new.

Our cleaning and protection service can bring your outdoor structures back to life. This service consists of more than just power washing and cleaning. After thoroughly cleaning and pressure washing your deck or other outdoor structure, we then follow-up with an application of environmentally friendly, premium quality sealant. You can choose to enhance your deck with a new color from our extensive palette, or just leave it natural. Our synthetic resin sealer protects your deck from the elements and resists subsequent mold and mildew growth. Our clean and protect service is perfect for use on pressure-treated wood decks and outdoor structures, cedar, mahogany, redwood or any vertical or horizontal exterior wood surface.

Dayton Deck Cleaning and Sealing Services

In addition to wooden outdoor surfaces, we can also clean your low-maintenance, synthetic/composite deck and hardscape surfaces, too!

Older low maintenance composite and PVC decks require little work to keep in good condition, (much less upkeep than wood), but still, needs maintenance and attention to keep them in tip-top shape. Our composite deck cleaning service uses a safe, oxygenated cleaner that’s highly effective at removing black stains caused by dirt, grime and graying common on composite decking surfaces. In addition, unlike chlorine bleach, our environmentally friendly deck cleaner is biodegradable and will not harm composite wood fibers, pets, grass or most plants.Dayton and Cincinnati outdoor living experts
Patios and hardscapes need attention too! We recommend cleaning and sealing your hardscape every three to seven years, depending on environmental aspects and traffic to the area. Whether you have a new hardscape or if your patio has been in service for several years we can keep it protected or help revive it to its former beauty with our proven clean and sealing process.

Centerville OH Patio Extension and Privacy Screen

Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio is committed to helping you get the most out of your outdoor living space season after season! A freshly cleaned and protected deck and/or hardscape is the best way to do just that!

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Call today to schedule your free clean and seal estimate – (937) 848-7040 (513) 897-2040 or email us at westcentralohio@archadeck.net.

Should a homeowner design their own outdoor living space?

Kettering OH low maintenance deck builderIn a world filled with success stories about the do-it-yourselfer it is only natural that a homeowner feels designing a deck on their own would be a breeze. Understandably, after watching others successfully master deck design and building in a 30-60 minute episode on the home improvement channel makes the task seem like a walk in the park, right?

WRONG. 

As many homeowners look ahead past winter’s chill to the warm season ahead, you may feel compelled to pursue designing your own deck. Here at Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio we have had a handful of homeowners bring their own designs into their consultation over the years only to be met with a pleasant surprise; it’s best to leave the designing and building to a professional. This may sound abrupt. However, based on our experience we know that combining your needs and desires with our professional design expertise can give your new anticipated deck increased functionality, appeal and above all more value for your hard-earned dollars.

We know how to utilize and enhance every inch of your new deck. Whether it is adding versatile seating that doubles as a rail, or a bump-out area to enhance and expand the area where you plan to place your grill. Our decks are customized to speak to your needs, not the needs of the people on the home improvement shows, you need only take a peek into our Greater Dayton & Northern Cincinnati OH Custom Decks gallery, located on our website to see the custom touches we pour into every deck we build — making it one-of-a-kind.

3D rendering of proposed design prepared for Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

3D rendering of proposed design prepared for Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio.

A deck designed with your comfort and objectives in mind is only the tip of the iceberg. Our outdoor structures are designed and built to the highest quality and safety standards too. Taking all weight loads and connections into consideration, This gives you a space you can feel confident in enjoying for many years ahead.  Just like your home, it’s important to make sure your deck is built right. Most experts agree that the average life expectancy of a wooded deck is 10 to 15 years. Decks built using low-maintenance materials such as composites and PVC can more than double that average. It is crucial when designing a deck to evaluate its construction details to make sure it’s structurally sound and safe using the proper structural connectors and fasteners.

The new deck complements the Tudor architecture of this home in Cincinnati, OH.

There are thousands of little details that go into designing and building a deck– some that you see, and some that you don’t.  But their sum total makes up the look, feel and underlying quality of the project as a whole. There are many details that are standard in our designs – both aesthetic and structural – that come as a result of having built thousands of projects. Archadeck of West Central and Southwest Ohio knows the difference in your satisfaction and happiness for years to come lies within the details.

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Call us today at (513) 897 – 2040 or (937) 848-7040 to learn more. You can also email us at wcohio@archadeck.net

“Let this be the year that Archadeck makes your outdoor living dreams come true.”

 

Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio is a master of versatile design — as we end the cycle of boring outdoor living spaces

  • Is your deck too small to use it the way you really want?
  • Do you avoid using your deck or patio because it lacks functionality?
  • Is your outdoor living space an eyesore that degrades your home’s appearance?
  • Is your outdoor structure a safety hazard?
  • Is your deck or porch capacity less than 3 people at any given time?
  • Does your patio limit the space you have available for grilling, outdoor dining and relaxation?
  • Do you find yourself “creeping” into the lawn to have more room for outdoor activities?
  • Does your outdoor living environment leave you feeling claustrophobic?

cookoutIf you answered “yes” to any of the questions above, then it is time to end the cycle of cramped, boring outdoor living — and Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio is just the company exceed your expectation of what your outdoor living space can be! Our design philosophy involves more than just building a boring 12 x 12 standard size deck with builder grade amenities. We go far beyond the realm of necessity, thinking “outside the box” to give you the most function and aesthetic for the most value.

 why should your outdoor living space(s) deliver any less satisfaction than those within the home?

Interior of playroom within home.

Your home is one of the single biggest investments you will make. Your home is also the place where you can wind down from the stresses of work, school and other household obligations. This concept is responsible for the titles we use to label certain interior areas of a home. For example a “playroom” is called so for that very reason, we use it for “play”. Whether you define play as reading, board games, or enjoying movie night with the kids. Much the same can be said for the “living” room — after all, this is where most families “live, laugh and linger” indoors. Taking all these factors into consideration, why should your outdoor living space(s) deliver any less satisfaction than those within the home?

Our award winning deck in Spring Valley, OH features a curved, raised area for dining.

Our award-winning deck in Spring Valley, OH features a curved, raised area just for outdoor dining.

Curved integrated bench seating on deck in Central Ohio

Just like the details we pointed out in a previous post titled “Our Dayton & Cincinnati outdoor living space creations emphasize the difference is in the details!” The details of the design make your experience, and how you view the space more fulfilling. Archadeck of West Central and Southwest Ohio specializes in providing our customers with a detailed customer oriented design while paying attention to the intricate details that provide a true, custom, one-of-a-kind structure. Our custom deck, porch and patio designs often include curved, radius edging, picture framed borders, integrated seating, planters and integrated lighting  along with other intricate details you just don’t get with typical builders.

Kettering OH 2013 dream deck project

The first question we ask during your design consultation will be “how do want to use your space.” Along with desired functions and aesthetics, we also inquire about what size and type of outdoor furnishings you intend to use within your space. For example, typically a standard-sized outdoor dining table takes up an area 6 feet long and 42 inches wide, with each standard-size outdoor chair taking up an additional two feet. Factor in ample pull out room for each chair will add another two feet per chair. This adds up to a space that takes up a 12′ x 12′ area. In addition to dining tables, most homeowners want a place for seating as well, which will tack on additional space. Once you add side tables and accompaniment pieces, you are looking at the need for more space than most homeowners had anticipated for their furnishings. This is why discussing details such as furniture choices is also an important part of the design process.

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

There are thousands of little details that go into designing and building an outdoor living project – some that you see, and some that you don’t.  But their sum total makes up the look, feel and underlying quality of the project as a whole. There are many details that are standard in our designs – both aesthetic and structural – that come as a result of having built thousands of projects. Archadeck of West Central and Southwest Ohio knows the difference in your satisfaction and happiness for years to come lies within the details.  Call us today at (513) 897 – 2040 or (937) 848-7040. You can also email us at wcohio@archadeck.net

“Let this be the year that Archadeck makes your outdoor living dreams come true.”

See more examples of our award-winning outdoor living spaces by visiting our extensive photo galleries located on our website and featured  on Houzz.

 

 

Owner Tim Stephens hosts podcast with Jon & Dave of Pro Construction Guide!

pro-construction-guide-iconIt is always an honor to be asked to speak within a forum about the topics we love so much here at Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio. On September 12th, I was fortunate enough to be featured in a live podcast with Jon & Dave of Pro Construction Guide sponsored through the Home Depot.

This podcast is a radio show you can listen to from your computer, phone, tablet, or other device any time you want. You won’t want to miss what thousands of pros across America have already discovered; the Pro Construction Guide podcast brings the magazines and newsletters to life. Listen to the podcast for valuable insights from interviews of construction, remodeling, and maintenance pros. Hosts John and Dave bring decades of experience from the jobsite as they entertain while they educate.

West Central and SW Ohio composite deck builderIn this episode, I discuss why homeowner’s love composite decks and how easy they are to build. Since 1990, Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio has been building low maintenance synthetic decks, such as composite in and around the Dayton and Cincinnati area. During this time composites, and the nature of the material, have significantly reduced call backs and warranty claims.

Some of the many benefits of choosing synthetic decking include the lower maintenance aspect over that of traditional wood, it lasts longer, resists staining and scratching, and many come with anti-fade warranties depending on the specific brand. This means your synthetic deck will likely look as good 20 years from now as it does the day it was installed with minimal maintenance.

Kettering, OH dream deck winner

The first low-maintenance board to come out was called “composite” because it contains a combination of synthetic resin combined with wood fibers. As you can imagine, there are many different ways composites can be made. When it first came on the market 20 or so years ago, it had some problems with mold but those problems are long in the past. Today’s companies have identified the right mix of materials to create a great decking board and many come with a 20 -30 year warranty. These warranties may differ slightly from one manufacturer to the next but the protections afforded by the warranties protect against material defects and the aging woes of wood including checking, splitting, splintering, rotting or fungal decay. There is one protection that the high end, all-synthetic boards share which is warranted stain and fade protection. Keep in mind, low maintenance doesn’t mean NO maintenance and if you clean up and wipe away spills and messes, you should not need to worry but for warranted stain and fade protection. Here’s a rundown of the different types of synthetic decking currently available:

Mechanicsburg-OH-Staged-project-with-deck-and-pergola-Traditional Composite Decking

Composite decking material requires a lot less maintenance than its solid wood counterparts – even those treated with preservatives. Composites can be made to emulate the look of real wood, with wood graining that in a quality composite can rival the real thing. A high quality composite can also inhibit the growth of mold and mildew by the addition of mold inhibitors present in the makeup of the composite.

Composites can be cleaned by simple soap and water cleanup. If stains sit for a period of time, they may take a little more effort to clean. There are many good composite cleaners on the market. As with any deck that contains natural derivatives you will still have to contend with fading, scratching and dirt. Composites, even though they do require maintaining, do no compare with the chore of staining and painting on an annual basis that is necessary with a pressure treated or other entirely wooden deck.

Raised dining area on Spring Valley OH custom Fiberon DeckSolid PVC Decking

If composite is a great option, PVC is the big daddy. As mentioned above, their warranties often includes protection against material checking, splitting, splintering, rotting, termite attacks, fungal decay and even warranted protection against fading and staining. What’s the drawback? You guessed it – price. Because there are no natural fibers, all of these protections can be afforded and warranted. But the synthetic resin is a good bit more expensive than wood fibers. So, the top of the line product does have pricing at the top end of the synthetic decking price spectrum. It is always important to remember that over time, a PVC deck, like many other synthetics can pay for itself over time in what you would save from wooden deck upkeep, repair or even replacement.

Waynesville OH covered porch and deck pavilionsCapstock Decking

As mentioned during the podcast, capstock decking is the newest of all the synthetics and also a great choice for homeowner’s stuck between traditional composites and solid PVC. Capstock is a composite board capped with PVC so you get the best of both worlds. Capstock is made up of a proprietary PVC polymer shell and contains a composite wood and recycled plastic core. It is considered a composite decking material but boasts a durable PVC shell. It is also known as a composite hybrid, as well as being referred to as capstock decking. These products are being backed by some of the best warranties in the business, therefore we expect good things from Capstock products.The price? As you expected, the price is in the middle but not that much higher than composite.

Please visit https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/pro-construction-guide-podcast/id1028908337?mt=2&ign-mpt=uo%3D4 to listen to the podcast in its entirety.

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

If you are considering a deck of composite, PVC or capstock, contact Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio to help you decide which material is the best for you and your family.  Call us today at (937) 848-7040 or (513) 897-2040 and via email at: wcohio@archadeck.net.

“Let this be the year that Archadeck makes your outdoor living dreams come true.”

 

 

This Xenia Township deck gets a new lease on life from Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Xenia OH redeckingOur designs here at Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio are often so impressive that some may think all we cater to is building new large-scale combination outdoor living spaces. Fulfilling the dream of the ultimate backyard is something we cater to, the scale of what one customer imagines as their “dream” backyard can be quite different. That being said, we specialize in designing and building new outdoor living spaces and upgrading existing outdoor living spaces — in all shapes and sizes, big and small.

Remember, custom doesn’t only mean extravagant designs with an unlimited budget, but it always means a design tailored to your personal needs and tastes to fit your budget.

One of our most recent completed projects in Xenia Township, OH,  serves as a testament of how making small changes and upgrades to your existing outdoor structure can increase their aesthetics and function dramatically.

  • Before: The decking boards on this existing Xenia, OH, deck had lost their dazzle. Not only were they faded and beginning to warp, the curves and existing fascia board were also in need of attention.

Xenia OH redeckingXenia OH redecking

The improvements included in this project were performing structural rework around the integrated trees, adding a new TimberTech composite fascia, replacing numerous deck boards, adding the charming paver landing  and sealing the entire deck to tonally match the color used in the new TimberTech fascia. In addition we also created a small but charming paver surround/landing off the main exit of the deck.

Take a look at this amazing before & after image — wow!

xenia-oh-redecking

Our commitment to excellence in outdoor structure design and building ensures your unique project is built with attention to even the smallest details. We are the Dayton and Cincinnati area’s premier custom outdoor living space design and build firm. Contact us today to learn more at (937) 848-7040 or (513) 897-2040 and via email at:
wcohio@archadeck.net

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

“Let this be the year that Archadeck makes your outdoor living dreams come true.”

 

Imagine your backyard possibilities with Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio!

Kettering OH 2013 dream deck projectWe all daydream about how we imagine our perfect home would be. Whether you love cooking and imagine extending and transforming your kitchen into a culinary crescendo that would make Emeril Lagasse blush, or revamping your two-car into a dream garage worthy of charging admission to enter, we ALL have a vision of improving both the interior and exterior of our homes. Many homeowners have all the right intentions when moving forward with their home improvement endeavors, however, being able to realistically imagine the “vision” is something many struggle with.

With this in mind, Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio has put together a pictorial of before and after images of clients we have completed projects for. Being able to see the dramatic, side-by-side imagery will help homeowners, just like yourself, imagine the endless possibilities in your own backyard!

This sunroom and deck addition in Miami Township, OH, totally transformed this home. The space is designed with year-round comfort in mind and is versatile day to evening.

Miami Township OH before and after sunroom and deck addition

Miami Township OH before and after sunroom and deck addition

This Springfield, OH, project entailed adding an upper deck to the homeowner’s existing lower deck. Not only did this provide the shade benefits they had in mind, it also allowed more use of the second story. The new deck is built using premium pressure-treated wood and is designed to accept an under deck rain carriage system, such as DrySnap, in the future.

Before and after backyard in Springfield OH

more after images of Springfield OH deck additions

This Washington Township, OH, screened porch addition changed the whole way these homeowner’s live outdoors and enhanced the aesthetics of their home too!  When we initially met the homeowners for the design consultation they expressed the need for a better space to utilize their time outdoors. Their only outdoor space consisted of a concrete pad which they were using as a patio, but the sun and insects prevented them from enjoying it during the afternoon and around dusk.  The design we created includes a screened room built over the backyard’s existing pad. To further the functionality of the backyard we also built an open-air paver patio off the porch.

before

Washington Township OH screened porch

Interior images of Washington Township screened porch addition by Archadeck of West Central & SW Ohio

This project in Centerville, OH, proves the power of changing an existing outdoor space for the better. These homeowner’s already enjoyed using their existing screened porch for two out of the four seasons, but felt like they were still missing out on some prime usage. With our professional installation of a EZE Breeze system of vertical sliding panels of vinyl windows backed with screens, they do get more! When the weather is right, they can slide them down for a screened in porch, and pull them right back up when it’s raining!

Before and after EZE Breeze in Centerville OH

In 2013, Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio was chosen to design and build the deck for the 2nd place winner for the Dream Backyard Makeover contest, which was sponsored by Archadeck Outdoor Living and Belgard Hardscapes. As you can see from the before and after pictures, which were part of the entry to this contest, we took this backyard from dull to dazzling!

before and after dream deck in Kettering OH

Dream deck in Kettering OH

We hope this pictorial has helped you imagine what your outdoors can be. Whether you are ready to break ground on a new outdoor living structure or are ready to upgrade and existing space, we are here to help!

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

Tim Stephens owner of Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio

If you are ready to move forward with the outdoor living space of your dreams, contact Archadeck of West Central & Southwest Ohio today to learn more. Our outdoor living space designs are built with quality, beauty, value and function in mind every time! Call us today at (937) 848-7040 or (513) 897-2040 or via email at wcohio@archadeck.net.

“Let this be the year that Archadeck makes your outdoor living dreams come true”